How Excursions to the Vet Turned Out to Be Fun for Ollie.

I have only a vague recollection of the first time I went to the Veterinarian’s office. It happened when I only a couple of weeks old. My nine brothers and sisters and I were put in a box and shuffled off in a car. Suffocating is all I remember.

Once I was at Skygate Farm with James and Ron, we started going for rides in James’ car, something I enjoyed immensely since I was the only one in the front passenger seat with plenty of air to breath. Not having to be nearly smothered in a box was liberating. I had no idea where we were, but James pulled off the road and parked. Unbeknownst to me, this was my second trip to a Vet.

Taking me in his arms, which I loved more than anything when I was barely two months old, we went inside a building. James put the leash on me, which I had yet to understand. Still, there were people and, this is what made me excited, other dogs inside! The people ooh’d and aah’d over me, and the other canines and I sniffed one another while wagging out tales – well, I wagged my nob.

(Ollie and James after a visit to the Vet – all smiles.)

Suddenly there was a treat being offered to me. It smelled, what I came to learn, like bacon. Oh, boy! All the people were so nice, and most of the dogs were pleasant, some even eager to play.

The very next week James took me back. There were no other dogs visible in the room where we went, but their smell was present. So was the smell of the treat made from bacon. Not only was it present, but I got two more of them simply for having shown up. Then, after the man in the white smock looked we over from head to nob – like I said, I don’t have a tail – I got two more bacon-flavored delights.

Stack, Oliver
(Ollie sitting on the reception desk at the Vet.)

We made a trip to the Vet’s office every week for the next two months. It seemed that all I had to do was show up and they would give me a treat. James said he didn’t want me to be afraid of the going to see the Veterinarian. As such, he made it a joyful experience. To me, it will always be a thrilling practice even though some less-than-exciting things have happened to me there, if you know what I mean.

Speaking of meanings, James never wrote a poem about our trips to the Vet. I wonder why? [I didn’t think it was important until now, when you asked me to type this particular blog for you.] (That was James answering my gratuitous question.) [That was Ollie rolling his eyes.] Anyway, here’s a poem James did write about something entirely different – Maple tree seeds.


my primary genus is Acer
it’s the Latin for my plant classification
which is typically used for edification
maple is the name that’s commoner

there are over a hundred of our kind
sugar is the one most cheer up
during mid to late winter is the time
to collect sap and make syrup

come autumn the hillsides we beautify
with colors red orange and yellow
picture taking tourists in cars drive by
the longer nights are to what we owe

fall is also the time of year
fliers flappers floaters appear
we are the helicopter seeds
being shed by the maple trees

try and catch us if you can
as we find our way round

spinning we land aground
for we have a secret plan

for chipmunks squirrels birds and mice
we serve as forage and feed
if we survive winters’ snow and ice
our coating will shed our seed

the kernels stir from slumber awaken
germination provides a single root
the beginning of life is breathtaking
tunneling in the soil so resolute

above the ground appears a trunk
upon which two nodules the seed is known to split
throwing off its veneer like junk
exposes the cotyledon the seed-leaf bit

all of our leaves are known as palmate
and have five points with smooth margins
filled with chlorophyll to activate
photosynthesis to feed the tree’s organs

we all first learn to crawl
and then to stand up tall
and begin our education
for our maturation

upon graduation we become trustworthy
to carry on our legacy
by emitting two-wings two-seeds we deliver
like a U-shaped helicopter

which brings me full circle to Acer
and the syrup from sugar maple stands
like life’s cycle there’s nothing greater
mine takes place within the woodlands

I have to laugh. While reading this poem – well, while James read it aloud to me – I could see how these seeds might be mistaken for delicious delights. They never have interested me in that way since they don’t have an appetizing odor about them, unlike the animals mentioned in the poem.

With that said, because James took me to the Vet every week when I was little, and I got a treat for going, I now find the thought, the trip, and the visit to be an exceptionally wonderful experience. I know. I know. Sometimes I get pricked with a needle. That’s okay considering the delightful things – not maple seeds – I get to eat when I’m there.

(A sugar maple “helicopter” seed and alphabet treats.)

James told me that when he was little the doctor he would visit would give him a candy sucker at the end of the visit. It made going to the medical man reasonable. That is except when they did something that hurt, usually when he was groggy, and there was no candy at the end of the visit. (I wouldn’t like that either.)

Something you will like is my blog post in two weeks. Come back and find how I found my way into the “way back” of the car. I think you’ll find it interesting.

 Between now and then, feel free to scroll down and make a comment, letting me know what you think of my blog and James’ poems. I always like to hear from you, so please leave me a note about this or anything else that’s on your mind.

Until next time,
Sir Oliver of Skygate Farm (you can call me Ollie)


Paw Prints courtesy of
All photos © James Stack 2018 unless otherwise indicated

One thought on “How Excursions to the Vet Turned Out to Be Fun for Ollie.

  1. Very interesting. Dragon said to tell Ollie she has never been to a “vet” or a “doctor” – her only experience is with healers, and even then the experience is second-hand. (Dragon has no need of healers.) She said some of them were very good, and some reminded her of ducks. She said you and Ollie would understand, James. But she said none of them ever gave their patients any treats.

    We both enjoyed your poem, too, James.

    Liked by 1 person

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